To The Green Fields Beyond
from 14 September
opened 25 September through until 25 November 2000
41 Earlham Street, London WC2H 9LD
Warehouse Box Office Tel:+44 (0)20 7369 1732
here for Donmar
by Sam Mendes
Designed by Anthony Ward
Lighting by Howard Harrison
Music by Stephen Warbeck
Cast includes Ray Winstone
with Dougray Scott,
Danny Babington, Finbar Lynch, Danny Sapani, Adrian Scarborough, Hugh
Dancy, Nitin Ganatra.
A haunting new play.
Autumn 1918. An eight man multi-racial tank crew wait to go into battle.
The events of one night in the heart of the forest, at the heart of the
the reviewers like the cast, but not the play itself.
Standard 26 Sept - click
26 Sept - click
26 Sept - click
The Daily Telegraph 27 Sept - click
The Financial Times 26 Sept - click
The Observer 1 October - click
to The Guardian,
play revolves around a multiracial crew of a tank during the Somme offensive
in September 1916. The generals hoped that the new weapon would turn around
the war, stuck in a battle of attrition, by being able to break through
the German lines.
of the tanks broke down with mechanical failures on their first outing
at the Somme, long before they got in sight of German trenches, and failed
to break the stalemate.
to army tradition, the new tank corps recruited from all corners of the
British empire, and moreover its tank commanders were "ordinary blokes"
rather than officers.
21 July 2000:
abandons hardman image for mendes play
Winstone will swap his hardman image for that of a caring soldier in Oscar-winning
director Sam Mendes's next play at his London theatre.
actor, whose gritty films include Scum and Nil By Mouth,
will play a brave and sensitive lance corporal in the wartime drama To
the Green Fields Beyond at the Donmar Warehouse.
be joined by a host of younger actors, including Hugh Dancy, who played
David Copperfield in the BBC adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic
said: "The play is an ensemble piece set among a tank unit on the eve
of the First World War, so there are no main characters as such".
character is quite different from anything he has done before. He's basically
a very good man."
Release 23 June 2000:
Winstone will star in director Sam Mendes' first stage production
since his Oscar success with the film American Beauty. Winstone
will play a member of a World War I tank crew in the world premiere of
Nick Whitby's To the Green Fields Beyond which opens at the Donmar
Warehouse on 25 September (previews from 14 September) and continues to
25 November 2000.
planned - and already begun casting for - a production of Shakespeare's
Twelfth Night for the autumn run, but was so taken with Whitby's script
that he changed the theatre's schedule at short notice. Speaking at the
time, he said: "Shakespeare can wait. You have to take advantage
of a good and exciting new play like this. It is not every day they land
on your desk."
takes place in the autumn of 1918 and examines the relationships between
the men in the multi-racial crew as they battle against the odds. During
the war, many Army generals believed that this new weapon of war could
break the deadlock of the trenches, but most of the tanks seized up as
a result of mechanical breakdowns.
To the Green Fields Beyond
will be Winstone's first stage performance since 1997 when he appeared
at the Royal Court in Caryl Churchill's This Is a Chair.
His stage credits include Patrick Marber's debut play Dealer's Choice
at the National and Joe Penhall's Some Voices and Pale Horse at
the Royal Court.
Whitby's previous work includes Dirty Dishes, about
illegal workers at a pizza restaurant, which has been a great success
in Germany. He has also worked on Crossroads, Boon, first
Sean Hughes Show, and Eddie Izzard's pilot sitcom Cows.
He is still in his early 30s.
Fact: 'To The Green Fields Beyond' is also the name of a tank role-playing